Saturday 24 October 2009

Safety warnings advised during clock changes (UK)

Drivers and pedestrians are being advised to take extra care on the roads this weekend as the clocks go back to signal the end of British Summer Time (BST).

The sun will be setting an hour earlier from Sunday 25th October, which means that children will soon be making their way home in the dark.

Peter Rodger, chief examiner at the Institute of Advanced Motorists, warned: 'The period between late afternoon and early evening – the time when most casualties happen will be in darkness.'

Drivers are told to turn on their lights before it's fully dark and to take particular care where children may be on the streets between 4pm and 6pm.

Children are being urged to 'Be Bright, Be Seen' by the Department for Transport in a road safety campaign launched today.

Last year, 867 children, aged six to 11, were killed or seriously injured on the UK's roads. Children are advised to wear bright or fluorescent clothing in the daytime and reflective clothing if they venture out after dark.

There's substantial evidence that fewer people would be killed and seriously injured on Britain's roads if the country were to put the clocks forward by one hour throughout the year, according to a report published yesterday by the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee.

It recommended that the Department for Transport (DfT) looks again at changing current policy. The new system where clocks would be put one hour ahead of GMT in Winter and two hours ahead in Summer, has been dubbed 'Single Double Summer Time' (SDST).

A DfT spokesperson said: 'A wide range of issues would have to be taken into account if a move to SDST was to be considered, of which casualty savings is just one.

For example, any changes to Britain's time zone would need to have full regard to the positive and negative effects on business and transport links with other countries; health and safety issues; and on social community life.'

For those of you that are living in Blighty, the clock will go back at 2am Sunday morning.

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